Weird Owl – [Album]

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

There’s no doubt about it, Weird Owl’s sophomore album (first for Tee Pee Records) is unmistakably the work of men that recognize their luck at getting the opportunity to make exactly the record they always dreamed of making. How could I know that? It’s apparent from the opening rush of “Mind Mountain” that, with its languid pacing, deep-in-the-pocket drums and relaxed guitar rumbling that this is the brand of stoner rock that the members of Weird Owl have been listening to and loving all their lives but, after a self-released false start in 2007 (Nuclear Psychology), they’ve finally gotten it just exactly how they want it this time. That satisfaction is palpable in the methodical tempos and medicated vibes here.

But what does saying that entail? Does it mean the album is generally tired sounding? No, it simply means that on Ever The Silver Cord Be Loosed, Weird Owl sets itself apart from the pack by departing from the cliff-scaling so fashionable in stoner rock (think Dead Meadow it you want a glowing example) and gets lost in the wide open spaces of parts unknown. The expansive, deserted plains painted in tracks including “In The Secrecy Of Oceans” and “Do What The Owl Wilt” are filled with surrealist apparitions that the band walks down to investigate but—like Porky Pig stalking a dodo through Wackyland—never exactly catches up with the weird things they see—but there’s something incredibly attractive about them. They don’t speed up to capture them either—why would they? There’s no need to rush. Weird Owl takes its time here and examines things carefully without attempting to get any sort of momentum brewing in these eight tracks. That slow-motion delivery is part of Ever The Silver Cord Be Loosed’s charm; singer Trevor Tyrell flies low over songs like “Mind Mountain” and “Skeletelepathic” but the focus is always squarely on the ground even when they seem to be levitating above it; the band only looks up to stargaze (“13 Arrows, 13 Stars”), but never seeks to get celestial even at that. The results are a record that is very odd to be certain—sort of like The Meat Puppets with a serrated metal edge—but not the typical stoner rock exercise at all. By keeping their feet plated on level ground, Weird Owl and Ever The Silver Cord Be Loosed leave a decidedly realistic impression of a very surrealist plain and a notoriously starry-eyed approach.



"Mind Mountain" – [mp3]

Ever The Silver Cord Be Loosed is out February 17th. Buy it on Amazon.

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